The Banco Central de Cuba (BCC), Cuba’s central bank, is preparing to give licenses to digital currency and virtual asset service providers (VASPs). VASP permits will be available from May this year, according to the Cuban central bank. Permits will be for one year, with the possibility of being extended for an additional one, according to the publication from the Ministry of Justice on the 26th of April.
BCC will give licenses to domestic and international individuals and organizations, according to a resolution published in Official Gazette No. 43. The accepted permits will be valid for one year under the new system, according to the central bank. However, due to the innovative and unique nature of the space, a second-year extension is permitted. The license will expire in two years, but no further information has been published.
When examining the license request, the Caribbean country’s central bank stated it will look at the project’s legality, potential, socio-economic interest, and features. It will also assess the candidates’ “responsibility” and “experience in the activity.”
According to the present resolution, firms that operate without a license will face fines in line with the country’s existing banking and financial legislation. VASPs will also be unable to cease their services without prior approval from the BCC. The BCC highlighted in the decision that virtual assets do not include fiat currency in digital form, securities, or any other asset that is part of the traditional banking and financial system.
The ruling will go into force 20 days after it is published, on May 16. The new development comes exactly eight months after it was announced that Cuban President Miguel Diáz Canel was looking at acknowledging and regulating cryptocurrency for financial purposes.
Photo by Florian Wehde